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Changchun Yatai confirm signing of Brazilian midfielder Lucas Souza

Changchun Yatai

Changchun Yatai have finalised their import signings for the 2020 season, with Brazilian Lucas Souza joining the club this past week.

The 29-year-old midfielder links up with compatriot Serginho and Nigerian striker Aaron Olanare as Samvel Babayan’s trio of imports set to feature in the 2020 season.

Changchun had been linked with Souza more than a week prior to the close of the international transfer window and will now likely be used in rotation throughout the season.

China League One rules limit teams to just two import players during matches, meaning that teams need to balance playing time between the maximum three signings they are permitted.

Souza provides Changchun with stronger midfield depth, a position of need entering the off-season, playing a box-to-box style while primarily sitting in front of the defensive line.

The former APOEL player, whom he scored nine goals in 54 league games for, will likely be used during games where a more defensive strategy is required, either sitting behind Serginho in midfield or rotating in for him on occasion.

Souza’s arrival brings Changchun Yatai’s total number of signings to five this winter, with Zhang Yu and Zhang Zijian currently the only domestic signings to date.

The domestic transfer window remains open for clubs in China, allowing teams the opportunity to continue to assess players on trial or work out deals that can have a significant impact on the line-up.

Rumours around Chinese players linked with moves to Changchun have died down recently, with no further updates on the likes of Nan Song or Zhang Wenzhao.

Babayan now has a little bit longer to make final decisions on his squad, with hopes of seeing the season begin at some point in April or May.

But with his import signings now locked up, the Uzbek manager can feel fairly comfortable with his business so far, largely retaining a competitive team from last season while adding some strong players through the middle of the pitch.

James Reeve is a British sports writer and correspondent for Wild East Football. James is an avid fan of Changchun Yatai, having been a season-ticket holder in 2015, and has been involved with Wild East Football for a number of years.

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